Attila's Throne – Venice, Italy - Atlas Obscura

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Attila's Throne

An island on the Venetian Lagoon hosts this stone chair that has nothing to do with the King of the Huns. 


Torcello is a small island on the Venetian Lagoon. Now barely populated, it was one of the first inhabited islands in the region and a flourishing town before the emergence of Venice overshadowed it.

People came from the mainland to Torcello and the other islands in the lagoon to escape from invading armies during the downfall of the Western Roman Empire. The most feared of the invading peoples were the Huns led by Attila, who destroyed the city of Altinum on the nearby coast in 452.

Today, just in front of the local archaeological museum and looking towards two ancient churches, there is a large stone chair known as “Throne of Attila.” Despite the name and legend, the chair actually has nothing to do with the King of the Huns as it is dated to at least 100 years after his death. Most likely, it was just the seat of a local governor or bishop, but it’s still an impressive 1,500-year-old chair. Visitors can now freely sit on the chair and locals say that if you do, you will one day come back to Torcello.

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July 14, 2021

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